Can’t draw?  Neither can I!  So I frequently use shape tools built into the Artistic Digitizer program to create designs for embroidery.  These shapes can stay as they are or can be edited/skewed to create a new shape.  This is the easiest way to create my own shapes that are specific to what I require for an embroidery.

Open your Artistitc Digitizer program and create a new workspace.  On the left side of the screen you will see the shapes tool.  shapes toolMove the cursor over the shapes tool to see the fly out menu to see all the different shapes.  All of these can be easily edited to create unique designs.

Start by selecting the trapezoid shape tool. trapezoid tool Move the cursor to the workspace and click/hold/drag/release the mouse to place the shape on the worktable.

With the selection tool, slection toolclick on the shape to select it.  Use the paint fill tool and the outline edge tool to color your design.

color tools

tree trunk

Use this simple shape and repeat it several times to make a stylized tree design.  While the design is selected, click on the word ‘duplicate’ in the properties box at the top of the screen.

trapezoid properties box

Duplicate this several times and move each segment to a new position to create the overall shape of a tree.  Color each of the elements any color you wish to use.

trapezoid tree

Click on the edit nodes tool edit nodes on the left side of the screen.  Click on each shape of the trapezoid to select it with the edit tool and then drag the nodes to a new position to create a different shape.

trapezoid shapes edited

Click on any shape with the selection tool and then set the fill and edge stitch properties in the properties box at the right.  Experiment with the various stitch types in the drop down menu.

stitch properties box

Be as creative as you can by applying different properties and editing the shapes until you are happy with the results.

trapezoid tree textured

Be sure to watch the built in videos in the Artistic Digitizer program on the opening screen to see how each of  the shape tools can be edited for your use in creating free form designs.









Posted in Artistic Digitizer embroidery software | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Here is a cute project idea using AcuSketch App and the Janome MC15000 Quilt Maker

The AcuSketch app is a fast favourite of mine…..Just love being able to doodle on my iPad and then instantaneously send it to my Janome Mc15000 or Janome Skyline S9 to stitch out whatever I doodled. SEW much fun.

I made a very cute project as a gift for my little one last Christmas. I had been asked a bit earlier in the year to make a duvet cover for her newly redecorated bedroom so I saved the left over fabric used to make the duvet cover. This little one is a prolific & budding artist and is always scribbling or sketching away at her craft table. I asked her for one of her drawings and was given one of a happy monkey.

I took a photo with my iPad of her drawing and then brought that into the Janome AcuSketch app screen to use as a backdrop: I used the very handy dandy Janome Stylus pen to outline her drawing and then instantly turned it into stitches.

Notice the little wheel at the tip, the JANOME logo and screw on cap to protect the tip of the stylus…….everything you need for AcuSketching!

This design was then sent wirelessly to my Janome Mc15000 where I stitched it onto the white fabric leftover from one side of the duvet cover. I stitched it in a cerise pink colour to match the border I used on her pillow although after she was done, it did not matter what colour I had done the embroidery in!

On Christmas morning, once she had unwrapped this gift, she dashed off to get her felt tipped pens and set to work colouring in her monkey….right away. I think it is something quite special for them to see their very own artwork turned into stitches which they can colour in or paint to their heart’s content. I think it is safe to assume this particular Christmas gift was a hit!

Thank you Janome for AcuSketch App and giving us the ability to do so many fun and creative things!!

Posted in Janome AcuSketch APP | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments



Get funky with fonts using the Artistic Digitizer software!  Fonts don’t have to be boring.  You can get as creative as you want with the editing capacity of the Artistic Digitizer software.

Open your Artistic Digitizer program and create a new design work space.  Click on the Text tool text toolfrom the toolbar on the left side of the screen to create your lettering.  Choose a font type and type in text of your choice.  I used all capital letters and typed the word ‘JANOME’ onto the edit box.  Using the drop down menu for the envelope feature I chose envelope #8.  The program automatically positions the text you chose to fill the envelope area.

text envelope

This is a quick and easy way to add interest to the text rather than just a straight line of letters.  Not all fonts stitch well.  I have found that capital letters in a boxy style stitches well compared to some fancy script text.  You will need to test your selection to see if it stitches well for you.

Click on the select toolslection tool to select the entire text message.  Once it is selected, right click>break apart.  This will separate the letters so each letter can be edited separately from the others. Click on every other letter and change the color of the letters with the fill color tool fill colorat the bottom of the screen.  By changing the color of each of the letters the machine will stop and clip the threads between each letter so you don’t have tiny jump stitches to deal with.

color every other letter

Using the selection tool, click on the ‘J’ of the text and then move the cursor over to a corner handle of  the selection box and drag it outwards and upwards to enlarge just the individual letter.  This will emphasize the word more without changing the envelope created.  The wavy flow of letters stays the same.

resize one letter

Click on the text tool text toolto select it and add another line of text below the first line.  Create this line as a standard straight line of text without any added editing features.


Click on the selection tool slection toolto select the entire word.  Once it is selected, right click>break apart.  Now each of the letters can be edited separately.   Color each letter a different color as we did above.fill color  You can click and drag the selection handles on each letter or use the edit dialogue box at the top of the screen to move/skew the letters to any placement you wish to have.

edit handles to change text shapes

To add letters to an existing design with a different font style, simply click on the letter you want to replace and delete it.  Now click  on the text tool again and type the single letter you want to replace with a different font style.  Color it and edit its shape and rotation like you did with the previous letters.

edit font selection

font replacement

There are so many ways to get creative with the Artistic Digitizer software when creating text.  Be sure to watch the built in videos on the opening screen of Artistic Digitizer to learn all about the ways you can use the edit tools to change your text designs.  The videos are a great reference tool!


Posted in Artistic Digitizer embroidery software | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Announcing the Janomelife giveaway winners + janomelife viewers share their best tips for working with thread

We offered a summer giveaway of thread this month to 3 lucky people………sample packs of Wonderfil thread and we asked that each entrant share her best  Hint or Tip about thread. THANK YOU!! There were some real gems. I decided I would compile a list for you all, rather than you miss these gems tucked away in an endless list of comments – Believe me, my cell phone pinged the entire day on Canada Day and beyond……with your hints & tips coming in thick & fast! More below on these valuable tips for happy times with thread.



I know you are dying to know who won the thread. Possibly some people did not read the janomelife giveaway invitation properly? Some people wrote something like “I would love to win this thread” or ” I like Wonderfil thread”.  Sorry, but we did ask you to share your best hint or tip on using thread so…..fair is fair……only entries with a thread tip were considered for this giveaway.

And the winners are:

  1. Carol Kennedy

2. Joan Stephenson.

3. Bonnie Bucholtz

Congratulations! …..we  will contact the 3 of you shortly by email to get your postal address to ship your thread to you.

Here is a list of some of the great tips you shared – in no particular order. Thank you everyone for being so forthcoming with your advice, suggestions, hints and tips:

  1. Must say that I was amazed at how many people gave tips on how to thread the needle. I have no clue when I last threaded a needle on a sewing machine without using our fabulous Janome built-in needle threaders…… Seriously,  if you are still struggling to thread sewing machine needles, you probably need to ask your local Janome dealer to show you a sewing machine with a built-in needle threader! Janome only has a couple of models which don’t have this. Do yourself a huge favour and invest in a Janome with a built-in needle threader! Many people gave the tip of cutting the thread at a slight angle as that makes it easier to insert into the needle eye. I will admit I use that tip for hand sewing needles.
  2. Another popular tip was to store your thread in a covered box or container of some sort to keep it dust free and away from light which fades the colours.  Many people mentioned storing them in the dark – ie in a closet or drawer. Some people like the fishing or craft boxes to store their thread, others like drawers or cabinets. I have mine mounted on the wall on multiple thread racks…… Yes, very colourful wall art! So I am guilty about the dust free part but all my thread racks were well placed away from windows and bright light so I think I squeaked in on that one.

and I think there may be room for more thread?!

3. Quite a few people mentioned they wrap things around their thread spools to keep them tidy and prevent a rat’s nest of thread forming in their box or drawer. Some suggested those little pony tail elastics, others use that magic clear plastic tape to keep the thread from unravelling. This wrap would also protect from dust.  One lady suggested cutting sections of pantihose for large spools & cones – rather like a thread net. Clearly I don’t follow this advice: this jumble is what one of my thread boxes looks like! Seriously, I just shot a pic as I know well what awaits me in these boxes – What can I say?……. too many threads, not enough time!

4. Another tip that quite a few people mentioned was to store the thread together with a bobbin wound with the same thread. In fact many people feel that we should use the same thread in the needle and bobbin as the sewing results are much easier and hassle free. Well, I don’t actually agree entirely with that one as it is much too limiting for me ………but more about that another time……. maybe a future post on “Glad you asked that”?

One viewer winds a bobbin and puts this onto the pin on her thread rack & then the spool of thread on top of it so she always knows what goes with what. Good idea.

One real gem from another janomelife viewer which I had not heard before or thought about: put your wound bobbin onto a golf tee and stick this into the hole on the spool of thread – this way your bobbin and thread are kept tidily together. You will find items in sewing & quilting stores which do a similar thing to this but I had not heard of the golf tee and it sounds pretty clever. Not being a golfer, I would have no idea of the cost of one of those little tee’s to compare this to equivalent sewing store items but I guess some hubbies may soon be wondering where all their tee’s have disappeared to?! 

5. I was encouraged to see that quite a few people recommend using only good quality thread. Hooray!! I bought 6 extra large cones of top quality cotton and poly threads recently and nearly choked when I handed over my credit card to pay almost $170! Quality does cost more but, at the end of the day, it will save you so much in terms of frustration and disappointment as your sewing experience will be worlds better.

I have also stopped buying what I call cheap and nasty fabric as I see no point in spending multiple hours on a special garment only to find it pills, fades, colours run, it stretches out or virtually falls apart in the laundry. Buying good quality fabric and thread may seem like a luxury, but I am still ahead of the game as I would be paying more $$ to buy quality clothing and I am doing what I love!  I just finished making a Jalie City Coat and it cost me far less than if I had purchased a similar one in a store. In fact it looks so sharp in cream & dark grey fabric with red piping & buttons that hubby unwisely wondered aloud when I would ever wear it. He was lucky I was in a good mood when he said that!6. Another good tip was to use the appropriate weight thread for the project being made. And, of course, to use the correct needle for thread and fabric type.  For example, using a delicate silk thread on a thick winter coat fabric would probably be silly as would a 12wt thread on sheer silk fabric. One janomelife viewer suggested learning about the different types and weights of threads. Do you know the difference between 12 wt and 100wt? Maybe that could be another “Glad you asked that” post?

7. A few people mentioned paying attention to how the spool is wound and therefore how the thread comes off the spool. Yes, this is important if you lay the spool horizontally in your machine.  However, if you use our Janome vertical spool stands, you can forget this tip as our specially well designed spool stand deals with any spools or cones you care to throw at it and gives great thread delivery to the tension discs of your sewing or embroidery machine. Therefore …….avoids hassles all round. We cannot recommend our spool stand enough. Please resist the temptation to use a coffee mug next to the machine. Really not a good idea as it creates too much tension on the thread which leads to all sorts of drama.  I wish I had a $ for every time a sewer complained to me about how poorly her machine stitching was …….and after asking her questions……you guessed: she had her thread in a mug to the right of the machine! Bingo – problem discovered. 

8. One customer obviously makes stand alone lace embroidered designs – she suggested trying Wonderfil’s Invisifil (100wt) or Deco bob (80wt) for embroidered lace instead of 40wt thread. The results are much finer and more pleasing.

9. Wind more bobbins when winding for a project & then you won’t have to stop to rewind bobbins part way through when you are “on a roll” creating your project.  I know this irritates me – it may do the same to you  – so good advice.

10. If you do machine embroidery, one janomelife viewer tells us there is no need to match the bobbin thread colour to the top thread so she has a good stock of black, white & beige pre-wound bobbins ready. Janome sells blister packs of black & white pre-wound bobbins. These are 60wt strong poly thread, save time and give good results.  Available at all our authorized Janome dealers in North America. 

11.Quite  a number of folk have obviously had issues with old thread as they were advising not to use it. It has a shelf life, does get old, dries out and gets brittle. This sets you up for frustration so their advice is to toss out your old thread and use new thread. Another janomelife viewer writes the date of purchase on the top of the spool and this way she always knows how old her thread is. Good point.

12. One janomelife viewer suggested trying different combinations of thread tones in your embroidery. She says you will be surprised at the difference it makes to your project. Another encouraged us to not always match or blend your thread colours but to go bold with contrasts which can be stunning and fun. And someone else suggested trying random thread colours for interesting and fun results.

13. Some people suggested using a drop of Ease-a-Thread lubricant  or Sewer’s Aid which lubricates troublesome thread. I have done this in a pinch or to finish a project with a pesky thread. Most times changing the needle or getting rid of old, brittle threads (as in #11 above) does the trick.

14. A tip I had not considered: after sewing /embroidering, let the thread totally untwist before you wind it back onto the spool. Makes sense.

15. One person really likes the Janome pink & blue bobbins as she winds embroidery bobbin thread onto the clear bobbins, cotton thread onto pink bobbins and poly thread on blue bobbins. Sure takes the guesswork out of knowing what thread is on your bobbins. These sets of bobbins are available from your local authorized Janome dealer.

16. One sewer suggested that if you don’t have the right colour, you could use grey thread as it blends well with almost everything.

17. Storing thread with like thread types & weights is a good idea as it takes the guesswork out of trying to work out what thread is what at a later stage.

18. Here’s a good tip: “Even though I piece with cotton thread, I hand sew my bindings with poly as it doesn’t weaken and shred or break like cotton does after being pulled through the fabric multiple times.”

19. Use thin/fine embroidery thread when embroidering small size fonts for words.

20. Check your seam allowances as different thread types & weights can be slightly different. Even small differences mount up by the time you have pieced a whole quilt. Always pays to check first and adjust your seam width at the beginning if necessary.

21. Change to a needle with a larger eye if it shreds. Try our Janome blue & red tips which have larger eyes for this purpose.  Available at Janome dealers. See our many blog posts about Janome needles.

22. Use variegated thread for adding pop to sewing projects.

23. When threading invisible thread, touch the end with a black Sharpie marker and this makes threading a whole lot easier.

24. Thread breakage? Check you have your needle in correctly and all the way up. And are you using the Janome spool stand?

25. Quite  a few people suggested using beeswax for hand sewing. It coats and tames the thread wonderfully.

So many wonderful tips, don’t you agree? Thank you everyone for your great input. And congrats to the winners.





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Quilt-as-you-go Table Runner Made Easy with the Janome AcuFeed Flex System

Janome artisanI recently had to whip up a quick project to celebrate a special friend’s 60th birthday and decided to make her a QAYG table runner using the Janome Horizon Memory Craft 9400 QCP. If you don’t know what “QAYG” stands for, it means “quilt as you go” and refers to a specific quilting technique. It allows you to quilt your project as you are piecing/stitching the top, so rather than making a quilt top and then layering it with batting and backing before quilting it, you assemble all of the layers and quilt them at the same time. It’s a quick way to put a project together and was just the technique I needed to create this particular project in record time.

QAYG in progress close up

Piecing and quilting the table runner

Since I didn’t have much time (I know, my bad, but that’s how I often roll!), I picked out some fabrics in a colour theme she would like and created an improvisational log cabin table runner. When I make these types of projects, I usually just do straight or wavy quilting on them – again, since it’s so fast to do. I used two features on the Janome MC9400 to make the quilting on the table runner super easy: the AcuFeed Flex system and the optional AcuFeed Foot with Foot Holder (Single), with the foot identification lettering: VD foot. You can read more about how the AcuFeed Flex system works in this blog post.

Since I was quilting the whole quilt sandwich as I was creating the table runner top, I wanted to be sure that the backing wouldn’t be scrunched up when I was finished. While I would usually baste the layers together, for this project I layered the batting and backing together and then just started adding fabric strips on top. After piecing two strips together I then quilted a wavy or straight line on top. I didn’t baste any of the layers together before I began this process and the AcuFeed Flex system moved the top layers and the backing along at the same rate and there wasn’t any scrunching or shifting of the layers. I was confident that the AcuFeed Flex system would be perfect for this QAYG method and it didn’t let me down!

Cheryl's QAYG table runner front & back

Top finished and bound and a view of the quilt back

The optional Janome VD foot, which is narrower than the Acufeed Flex Dual Feed Holder with AD Foot that comes with the Janome MC 9400 machine, made it very easy to echo my quilting lines. I didn’t have to measure over a specific distance from my stitched line, mark a stitching line, and then stitch it: I just used the edge of my Janome VD foot as a guide. I would quilt a line, then line up the edge of the Janome VD foot along this stitched line and stitch the next line. Again, this was a real time saver for creating this project.

Janome VD foot

The AcuFeed Foot with Foot Holder (Single) – VD foot

Thanks to the AcuFeed Flex system and the AcuFeed Foot with Foot Holder (Single), I was able to make this table runner in just a few hours. It probably took me longer to choose each fabric strip and cut it to the desired width and length than it did to do the actual piecing and quilting!

Cheryl's QAYG table runner VD foot

Adding quilting to the QAYG table runner

The end result was a beautiful gift with stitching ease in every step.

Cheryl's QAYG table runner full


If you are interested in getting an AcuFeed Foot with Foot Holder (Single) for your Janome MC9400 machine or any other Janome machine that has the AcuFeed Flex system, do check with your local dealer.

For more information on the Janome MC9400 sewing machine, visit my Chatterbox Quilts’ YouTube channel.

Happy stitching from Kim Jamieson-Hirst, a Janome Canada Artisan in Calgary, AB.

Posted in Janome Horizon MC 9400 QMP | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Add A New Dimension To Your Quilting

I alluded to this in a previous post: While working recently in the Janome booth at the Courtepointe Quebec quilt show I demonstrated the fun, fabulous and versatile Couching Foot set available for Janome’s Quilt Maker Pro 18. Conveniently they also fit the Artistic SD 16 sit-down machine which adds to their versatility.

Like all Janome feet, the accessory feet available for the Janome Quilt Maker Pro 18 (and Artistic SD 16) are easy to switch out. Use the little Hex tool which comes included with the machine to remove the standard Closed-Toe Ruler foot  attached at the machine.

There’s also an Open-Toe foot included with your Quilt Maker Pro.

Incidentally, all the tools necessary to assemble the frame and make adjustments to the machine are included, like the handy little screwdriver to adjust the tension of the bobbin case.

There are 3 types of accessory feet; Couching, Echo and Glide and in each case there’s even a little replacement screw if the one which comes with the machine goes missing somehow while switching the feet. You know, like how you mysteriously lose that one sock in the dryer. lol! Don’t worry Janome’s got you covered. They think of everything!


IMG_0002The Couching feet come in three sizes; 1.5mm, 2mm, and 3mm allowing you to use a variety of yarns, specialty threads and soft cords to add textural embellishments to your quilts, or to just plain pieces of fabric. Imagine quilting a whole big piece of fabric with some of the fabulous soft and fuzzy yarns available, then cutting the fabric into pieces to construct a tote bag, a wonderful unique jacket or stretch over a frame to create a piece of art to hang on the wall. The Janome Quilt Maker Pro can be used for more than just quilting quilts!

IMG_0706 (2)

The above photo shows some free-motion circles I did with a variegated fuzzy yarn from a discount store, but you can also pick up chunks of yarns and trims inexpensively from some second-hand stores as well.  This is also the perfect time to raid Grandma’s knitting basket and have some fun experimenting and creating different shapes and textures using a variety of weights and thicknesses of yarns.

With the addition of the fabulous Pro Stitcher Premium computer program, your Janome Quilt Maker Pro 18 can now do embroidery couching, as well, just as some of our domestic sewing machines can. How cool is that?!

Any design, like the cute butterfly below; one of the HUNDREDS of beautiful designs included in the software, can be stitched out using one of the Couching feet and a variety of yarns, or soft cords. You don’t want to use stiff twine, or soutache cord – soft and fluffy works best.

IMG_0922 (2)


Now, ideally you’d use a matching colour of thread or a colour which blends better with your yarn. You would not typically use dark red thread to stitch on yellow yarn, but even still, it really doesn’t show all that much. The fluffier the yarn, the more the stitches sink in.

There’s an instruction sheet included in the Couching feet case which gives you a few pointers, but basically, you just let the yarn travel along as the machine does it’s thing. Just be sure to give the yarn plenty of slack so it doesn’t pull tight, which often results in that section of the yarn not getting stitched down as nicely. You can see in the lower left of the above photo where my yarn pulled a little too tight and didn’t get stitched down. Not to worry though, I could always go back to stitch that little bit by hand or with my domestic sewing machine.


Even the tight curls of the design stitching back on themselves stitch out beautifully. It’s SEW fun to see the design come alive, become three dimensional. It’s almost as if this butterfly could fly right off the fabric!


Another good tip I’ll share: Be sure you have plenty of yarn on hand to complete your design! lol! This butterfly isn’t flying anywhere as I ran out of yarn before stitching out it’s right wing. Alternatively, I could have chosen to stitch a smaller butterfly beforehand as the Pro Stitcher Premium Software has tremendous editing capabilities. I know now to bring more supplies next time! Everyone was SEW excited and amazed to see the Couching Feet in action.

Now, a keen eye might have noticed that the centre body of the butterfly on the left looks a little different, more intricate than the design on the screen above. If that’s so, a gold star for you! In my next post I’ll talk about and show examples of yet even MORE fun, MORE creativity you can have with the fabulous Janome Quilt Maker Pro 18 and the incredible Pro Stitcher Premium computer. There really is no end to the fun and creativity with Janome.

















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Glad you asked that: Will the Janome “ruler” foot work on my machine?

Pic courtesy of Amy’s Free Motion Quilting Adventures

For a long time we have been asked this: “Will that ruler foot work on my machine?” And this is even more so lately as Michael, Erin, Yvonne and I have been traveling around Canada doing Rule your Quilt and Reign over your Sewing events this Spring.  However, we did not manage to get to all the Janome stores this Spring (no kidding…Canada is a big country!) so we may be doing some more of these popular presentations in the Fall. Please be sure to check with your local Janome authorized dealer if we might be coming to your area sometime soon? Ask if they can arrange a “Rule your Quilt and reign over your sewing” event with one of our Janome educators.

So I figured this often repeated question was a very good one to add to our “Glad you asked that” series.

Beautiful quilt quilted with the Janome “ruler” foot  – Pic courtesy of Amy’s Free Motion Quilting Adventures

We have 2 different systems for doing ruler quilting on our domestic sewing machines. Yes, our longarm, the Janome QMP18, has its own system for ruler quilting but we will focus on what we use for our Janome domestic sewing machines today:

  1. The Convertible Free motion foot set + “ruler” foot attachment.



This is the ruler foot attachment which is Part #767434005. It is an optional accessory and does not come included with any of our Janome or Elna sewing machine models

This Convertible free motion foot set (in the big pic) above comes included with some of our machine models eg the Horizon MC7700; Horizon MC8900; Horizon MC8200 and MC6700P. So you would not need to buy this foot if you have one of these models.  All you would need to do is add the “ruler foot” attachment which is part #767434005.

If this Convertible free motion foot does not come included with your machine model, and your machine does not have auto presser foot lift, then you would need to purchase it as an optional accessory. Please check before buying it whether you have a HIGH or LOW shank machine as you will need to buy the correct set of feet. There are also different sets for 7mm and 9mm machine models so it is best to check with your dealer so you purchase the correct one for your machine model.

For ruler work, use the spring loaded foot marked with the yellow arrow in the pic above and then attach the ruler work attachment shown in the smaller pic under that. Now you are ready to ruler quilt!

2. The QR foot  is used together with the Ruler work section in the Sewing Applications menu on the Janome MC15000 Quilt Maker or the Janome MC9400. The QR foot with its accompanying firmware upgrade is only compatible with these 2 machine models at this time.

QR ruler foot for MC15000 and MC9400

Please note: 

  1. The Convertible Free Motion foot set may be used with ALL our high and low shank model machines (7mm  or 9mm models) which do NOT have automatic presser foot lift or Pivot function. It is  NOT recommended for use with any of our machines which have automatic presser foot lift (MC12000, Skyline S7; Skyline S9)
  2. The QR foot is recommended for our Mc15000 and MC9400 only at this time.

You may wish to ask your local Janome dealer about our wonderful Janome Ruler work kit (see this link for further information) to use with either #1 or #2 above depending on what Janome machine model you have.

Pic courtesy of Amys Free Motion Quilting Adventures


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Sharing the Janome Love

As part of my job as Educator with Janome, I love that I travel far and wide to share the Janome love. It’s so fun, rewarding and inspiring to me to meet fellow Janome fans and users. After-all, YOU are the reason why I’m here!

While helping out our fabulous Janome dealer, Dominque of Excelle in the booth at the Courtepointe Quebec show, I met a lovely lady, Marielle Poirier, who had two quilts on display at the show.

Marielle is a sweet, dynamic women; a woman of a particular age, who told me of her life-long passion for sewing and creating and who proudly stated that her quilts in the show were sewn and quilted on her much-loved Janome 4120QDC.



I loved the folksy, home-spun feel of this quilt and I thought her free-motion quilting complimented that beautifully.  The extension table included with the Janome 4120QDC was ideal to help support the weight of the quilt, especially when moving in multiple directions while free-motion quilting.


If you look closely, the quilting it isn’t “perfect”. Nor does it need to be. This is a quilt to be used, to be loved, and Marielle shared with me her love and her joy in creating it. She was proud of her efforts, and so she should be.


Marielle also shared with me her various health concerns, which included shoulder surgery, resulting in limited use of one arm. Within minutes of meeting her, however, I could tell that this feisty, dynamic lady didn’t let anything, including limited mobility issues stand in her way from having fun and doing what her heart desired. She loves quilting and creating and wasn’t going to let anything stop her, including that elusive image of perfection. BRAVO!

How many of us have shied away from doing something, in this case from free-motion quilting, or from entering a quilt show, because we were worried our skills and the results wouldn’t be up to par; wouldn’t be “perfect”? I know I’ve been guilty of that.

Marielle’s other quilt on display was a tribute to her family as she collected signatures of her siblings. (she’s from a family of 14) This quilt is also special because it was Marielle’s first attempt at free-motion quilting with her Janome 4120QDC.



Many users tell me they love their Janome 4120QDC because it’s lightweight and easy to take to class or retreats, but in Marielle’s case, she uses her machine at home full-time. It can easily take on whatever project she chooses.

The Courtepointe Quebec show runs every two years so I’m quite confident I’ll see more quilts from Marielle at that next show. I can’t wait! I was so taken with her quilts and we were so busy chatting that I neglected to take a photo of HER! I’m sorry, Marielle! Next time for sure!

What will you create with your Janome machine today?


Posted in 4120QDC, JANOME FREE MOTION QUILTING, Janome Sewing Machine | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Let’s see what Sherri has been up to……..

Yes, we are always thrilled to see what Sherri has been up to……her projects are so well thought out and beautifully executed. She is, in case you don’t know, one of our Janome Canada Artisans and sews on a Janome Skyline S9. She is also real excited about her iPad and our Janome apps which she uses to edit and send designs to her Skyline 9.

Sherri has made a rather lovely embroidered t-shirt with a side zipper insertion: as usual an easy to follow step-by-step tutorial is available for you. Check it out on this link.  

You might like to check out the other links Sherri has on this Side Zipper Tutorial as they may give you valuable information for your upcoming projects.











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Tamara Kate fabric >>>>look what I made with some of it!

Michael, aka janomeman, did a great post on 18th June about Tamara who is our spokesperson for Janome Canada and one of our Artisans. Check it out if you missed this post.  I smiled when I read Michael’s post as I too find it exceptionally difficult not to buy an armful of Tamara’s fabrics when I see them on display at shows. They are SO pretty and having 2 little grand-daughters gives me many reasons to buy!

So, yes, I did buy fabric! I think that was last year some time and I finally got around to completing 2 cute little dresses with Tamara’s “Princess and the Pea” fabric design a few months back. I could not resist this design as it brought back many happy childhood story book memories….. The Princess and the Pea was one of my favourite “fairy” stories as a kid. I used a well used kiddie dress pattern I had for the bodice for each dress and then just “ad -libbed” the rest. I lined the bodice with a soft pale blue grey solid fabric so there was no need for bindings or facings on the neck & armholes. The bodices were made with a complementary Tamara Kate fabric and I added a ruffle to the hemline and a sash to be tied in a bow at the back.

The weather is now lovely & warm in Vancouver so my little ones wanted to wear these dresses to school. I tried my best to coax them into a photo op. before school. There were complaints about the sun in their eyes….  but it was too early in the morning for this Nanna to be very sympathetic!

What have you recently sewed for someone you love? 


Posted in Janome creativity, JANOME PROJECT IDEA | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment